Before you can send SMS to a Recipient, they must Opt In to your marketing. If you already have Opt-Ins from another data source, you can load these into Act-On and get started sending SMS.
If you don’t yet have any Opt-Ins, don’t worry! We've got you covered. We'll show you how to add SMS Opt-In to a Form so you can grow your SMS audience.
Why is this necessary?
SMS is explicitly for Opt-Ins only. Act-On only sends SMS messages to numbers that appear on your Opt-In list. Making sure you have the right Opt-Ins is critical for you to avoid problems such as lawsuits and regulatory fines.
In this article, we will cover the following tasks, step-by-step:
- How to add a Marketing List with SMS Opt-Ins
- How to add SMS Opt-In to an Act-On Form
Use a Marketing List with Opt-In Data
Step 1: Prepare your Marketing List(s)
To use a Marketing List for SMS Opt-Ins, the list must have the following fields:
Mobile Phone Number
Act-On will accept most phone number formats and then convert the number to the format necessary for SMS.
Any consistent Date format will be accepted
Note: DateTime formats are not accepted and will show 0 contacts in your Opt-Ins.
If this data is coming from a separate source (eg a previous SMS provider), you may have it in a .csv format. You can upload this data as a Marketing List - but keep in mind that Email Address is also a required field when creating a new Marketing List.
Additional notes for your data:
- The Field names don’t have to match - you will identify the columns during your upload.
- Other fields can also be present in the Marketing List, but these fields will not be used by Act-On in the SMS Opt-In List.
Step 2: Select and Map your Opt-In List
Once your Marketing List is ready, add it to your SMS Opt-Ins:
- In Act-On, go to SMS > Opt-Ins
- Click Bring'em In
- Select your Marketing List that contains SMS Opt-Ins and click Map Fields
- Use the drop-down menus for each field to select the matching field:
- Use the three drop-downs to specify the Date Format for your Opt-In Date field. Use the data preview for the Opt-In Date field to assist with this step. In this example, the date format is YYYY-MM-DD:
- If you selected multiple lists, scroll down and continue to map these fields for each list.
- Click Add Lists to finish adding your Opt-In list(s).
Collect SMS Opt-Ins by Form
You can use Act-On forms to collect SMS Opt-Ins. To do this, add the SMS Opt-in Section to an existing or new Form. Even if you have uploaded your current SMS Opt-In List, we encourage you to have an SMS Opt-In form so you can continue to grow your list of SMS-eligible Recipients.
Important: If you collect Opt-Ins from an Act-On form, it is very important to set up an Automated Journey to welcome new users to your SMS list as a best practice, and as a legal requirement in some jurisdictions. We will be automating this process in the near future, for now please set this up.
Before you create your SMS Opt-In form, you will need the following details:
- A Disclaimer for opting-in to SMS communication which has been approved by your legal team
- Act-On provides three standard SMS Opt-In Disclaimers (see below for text)
- You can also write your own custom disclaimer
Add the SMS Opt-In Section
Act-On provides a form section called SMS Opt-In that you can easily add to a new or existing form. This section includes three components:
- a Phone Number Field
- a Submit button
- a SMS Opt-In checkbox, which includes a legal disclaimer
Is this required?
For an Act-On form to add opt-ins to your SMS Opt-In List, you must add this section to your form. You can move the fields and//or change the Submit button as needed.
If you choose to use a custom setup, or need to use different a field name for Phone Number, then you must manually add the Opt-In data from your Form Submission List to your SMS Opt-In List using the Upload instructions above. We do not have another way to automate this at this time.
Before you add the SMS Opt-In Section to an existing form, you must first remove the Submit button on the form.
To add the SMS Opt-In Section to your form:
- Drag and drop the SMS Opt-In Section onto the form.
- You will see a new section with three components: Phone Number, SMS Opt-In, and Submit.
- The Phone Number Input Field will already be pre-mapped to the correct system field. This is a system use field that cannot be changed.
- Click on the Opt-In Field to set up your Disclaimer (required).
- Scroll down to Disclaimer and choose Provided or Custom
- For Provided Disclaimers, select:
- Choose one of three Message Types from the dropdown: Promotional, Transactional, or Transactional and Promotional
- Enter your anticipated frequency of communication
- For a Custom Disclaimer, you will enter your own text in the provided field. Work with your legal counsel to create your own disclaimer based on laws for the jurisdiction(s) you operate in.
- For Provided Disclaimers, select:
- Click OK and continue to edit your form.
Note: This feature does not apply to Classic Forms.
SMS Opt-In Disclaimers Provided by Act-On
(eg marketing campaigns)
(eg purchase receipts, account notifications)
Promotional and Transactional
If you choose to use one of our Disclaimers, you are still responsible for meeting regulations for SMS based on the jurisdictions where you operate business and send messages to. Consult with your legal counsel to ensure you are meeting all requirements for SMS Opt-In communications.